ostracon ancient art



Mesopotamian Incantation Bowl, 5th-7th Century AD

Mesopotamian incantation bowl with a nonsensical text consisting of repetitive scribbles.

Bowls with nonsensical non-writing or pseudo-script were not uncommon. The four lines of writing enclose two demonic figures. Possibly male and female.

The heads are rendered in profile with large eyes, the line applied between nose and chin may be a tongue sticking out.

Both demons appear with crossed arms and legs, suggesting that they are bound. The feet with indicated toes.

Shallow bowl with stepped rim and deep grooves on the lower wall. Two concentric rows of repeated characters on the bowl's floor.

Incantation bowls were often built into walls or foundations or placed in cemeteries. The sinter deposits on the outer side denote that the bowl was placed upside down, as should be expected.

Intact and fine.

D. 16.3 cm (6.4 in)

Ex German collection Munich, acquired prior to 2005. Before in the Perrot collection.
Joined by an expertise of, Antiken-Kabinett B. Gackstätter, Cologne.

3800 USD

Click above for larger pictures --------

Literature: Craig A. Evans and Scott Stripling. "Two Pseudo-Text Incantation Bowls from the University of Pikeville", pp. 43-49 in: NEASB 64, 2019.

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